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More than 1,800 pounds of trash left behind by Fourth of July visitors at Lake Tahoe

Volunteers collected more than 1,800 pounds of trash at Lake Tahoe left behind by Fourth of July visitors, The Reno Gazette-Journal reported.

Jesse Patterson, the chief strategy officer of League to Save Lake Tahoe, said the nonprofit organized a cleanup along the shores of Lake Tahoe on Friday as part of their annual Keep Tahoe Blue effort.

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Patterson told the paper that 315 volunteers turned out for the event and cleaned up 1,875 pounds of trash overall. And out of the trash they collected, Patterson told the paper that volunteers found nearly 9,000 pieces of plastic.

"All that plastic never biodegrades," he told the paper. "If it doesn't get picked up, it stays at Lake Tahoe forever."

"People need to do better or be more aware of their impact," he continued. 

Patterson said the team also collected 5,458 cigarette butts during the cleanup effort on Friday, which he said is “already 3,000 less than what we found last year at this event.”

But the overall amount of trash collected Friday was significantly more than the amount gathered by volunteers at the group’s event last year, which Patterson said saw 1,473 pounds of trash collected then.

The news comes months after  ten tons of trash were removed from the shorelines of Virginia Beach shortly after Memorial Day earlier this year.